tv BBC World News WHUT August 18, 2011 7:00am-7:30am EDT
what can we do for you? >> and now, "bbc world news." >> several people are killed and dozens injured in israel and in a shooting al brink near the border with egypt. a gunman targeted a bus traveling parallel to the border. we will have the latest on the security operation under way in the region. >> welcome to gmt. thank you for joining me. i am gavin hewitt. a win for anti-corruption campaigner anna hazare in india after the government backed down and allows him to conduct a 15-day hunger strike.
thousands welcomed pope benedict, but the events also attracted protests. we start the program with breaking news. reports from israel say several people have been killed in at least two shooting attacks on buses travelling near the egyptian border. for the latest, let's go to our correspondent, paul, in jerusalem. what is the latest? it appears very confusing at the moment. >> the details are still emerging. we know the first attack took place on bus 392 carrying passengers to the coastal resort city of eilat. there were no fatalities there, we believe. soon after, there was an attack on an army vehicle. people were killed there. a spokesman for the army said there are fatalities and wounded from that attack. there's clearly a big operation
going on. they have not closed this down yet. they're still searching for the people who carried this out. >> paul, is the presumption that the attacks were coordinated? >> it is believed to be the same gunmen. that happened in a chronological fashion. the suspicion is that they have come across the egyptian border and carried out these attacks. apparently, a special helicopter attacked the gunmen. there were two of them. there was a fire fight. they are now trying to track everybody down. >> the presume in israel is that this used to be the safest, quietest border. i suspect it will be looking at this differently now. >> there have been a number of missile attacks that have occasionally injured people, but nothing on this scale and certainly nothing involving gunmen.
it also comes after a new government in egypt. a number of questions will be asked about how this happened. >> thank you very much. we will bring you further news when we have it from israel. let's take a look at some of the other stories making headlines around the world today. india's anti-corruption activist, anna hazare, has delayed his hunger strike for the day as the grounds where he wants to hold his public protest are not ready. he will now leave the indian prison on friday. the government tried to stifle his campaign by locking him up, but is now giving in to his demands after thousands rallied in his support. mark is in delhi at the park where anna hazare plans to hold his protest. tell us what is going to be like. how big of an event is this going to be like on friday when anna hazare turns up there?
>> i think it will be pretty enormous, gavin. the people here already know he will not be coming today as planned, but hundreds of people have shown up to show solidarity with this 74 year old man -- this 74-year-old man who led the campaign. as you said, he was arrested earlier this week as the police tried to stop any protests from going ahead. that has had the reverse impact. spurred people to leave their homes and go onto the streets. the government has not known what to do. now we have seen a back down. anna hazare, at some point tomorrow, will come here and i'm sure a huge crowd will be here to greet him as a hero. >> do you think this is really catching the attention of people in india and that the government feels a little bit intimidated by what may happen on the streets? >> i do not think the government
is going to feel particularly intimidated, but they are definitely on the back foot. the protests have become much bigger than they ever expected. the hunger strike has already started. he is an elderly man. he has been given permission to go on hunger strike for 15 more days here. that would be 17 or 18 days without food, in which case his health will deteriorated. as that happens, indian tv cameras will be filming every movement. the whole country will be watching what is happening and that will pile more pressure on to the government. so far, it has shown a disturbing lack of leadership. >> thank you very much for joining us from delhi. thank you. in syria, president bashar al- assad has told the united nations that they have stopped
cracking down on protesters. opposition forces say it is still happening. the u.n. office of human rights is preparing to release a report into the syrian uprising. this will be later discussed in the security council. we will bring you more on the latest u.n. report as soon as it becomes available. now let's go to jim muir, who is following developments in syria from a rout. thank you very much for joining us. how do you read this assurance from president assad that he has withdrawn tanks and forces from these cities? >> i think it shows he's not totally immune. he cannot turn a deaf ear to the forest of -- the chorus of protests and condemnation from
around the world. he is making cosmetic actions, including in hama and most recently in latakia. one has to say this is partly because they have done the job. they have restored state control to the streets by force. it was kind of job done and back to barracks as far as they were concerned, but the government is making a big deal of it. however, one has to say they have a huge range of security operations apart from the army. they have many security outfits that have been very prominent in the struggles so far. i think it is far too early to say they've done anything that really signals a sea change, rather than the cosmetic moves.
>> jim, i suppose there's a possibility that tanks are shown on television being pulled out of the cities, but it does not mean that the troops are leaving. >> that is right. a lot of troops have stayed behind with out the armored vehicles that they came in. as i say, there are also plenty of other apparatuses that they have. i think it is far too early to say there has been a real change of heart by the government. at the moment it seems like something they can do to raise a flag and say, "we are not crushing people with tanks anymore." >> we are waiting for a un human rights report on syria. does any of this have any impact on thinking in damascus? does any of this outside pressure make a difference? >> well, i think that's why we are seeing these moves on the ground.
they are not affecting the reality, but they are changing the regime's show of what is happening. at the same time, assad had a meeting with his party last night. he said syria will not flinch from its principles, no matter the house side -- no matter the outside pressures. they will crush, what he calls "armed terrorists gangs." . muir, thank you. a least 14 people have been killed after a roadside bomb hit a minibus in afghanistan. 2 afghan security guards were killed by a suicide bomber. the taliban has blamed -- has been blamed for both attacks. a former leader of the kosovo
liberation party is appearing in the the hague to be re-tried on the original counts relating to the war in the 1990's. a study has found that mosquito's are gaining resistance to one of the most common methods of treating malaria. those resistant to one pesticide group immune over 40%. >> we are now watching live pictures as the pope's convoy travels from the airport to the city center. in spain, many object to the cost of the event during a time
of austerity and mass unemployment. our correspondent joins me from madrid. we can see that the pope is headed to the center of madrid. what kind of reception do you think he will get after the protests over night? >> primarily, i think it will be a positive reception. a huge number of pilgrims have come to hear the pope and what he has to say. they have already spent several days in madrid. some of them spent a week or more. they have come here to meet the pope. they are extremely excited. some of them are as young as 16. they traveled with their church groups. this world youth day is about looking to the future. primarily, a positive reception. people are lining the roots.
a huge number of people will attend the events and ceremonies taking place. there are about 5000 people who joined the protests last night. it was a mixture of gay rights activist, feminists, and a broad range of people, but especially people concerned about funding for this visit. they believe a lot of state money has gone into this at a time of economic crisis and mass unemployment. >> we are now looking at some of those protesters last night. there were clearly some scuffles. riot police were out. this is a time of acute unemployment, especially for spain's young people. is this having an impact on how people are viewing this isn't? >> 46% youth unemployment. a huge number of people are worried about the future. but something the pope will touch on in spain. he talked about the precarious
future for young people around the world. this is certainly fueling anger about the cost of this visit. the organizers have said the vast majority of this event is funded by donations and sponsorships and the pilgrims themselves who paid to be here. of course, there are thousands of extra police on the streets. some state institutions are housing programs. all of that has been reinforced and that's all a tax to the -- and that's all it costs to the taxpayer, which some people are not happy about. >> thank you very much for joining us. we will be falling out over the next four days. still to come on gmt -- we are stronger together. u.s. vice president joe biden began his tour of china, urging the two nations to find common ground for global stability.
>> russia's first technology jet fighter. russia hopes to sell the new jet all over the world as a cheaper alternative to the american f- 22. the new aircraft made its first appearance at an airshow near moscow that was attended by putin. maria has this report. >> the public appearance of the fighter was long awaited. its rush as a first jet with stealth technology, making it less visible to the enemy.
among those watching was the country's prime minister, vladimir putin. he promised more support for the country's struggling aviation industry, especially government investment. >> [speaking foreign language] developing russia's air and aerospace industry is not only important for our reputation and technological development, but it also guarantees the country's defense capacity and security. at the same time, it will create economic growth. >> it all seems to be part of russia's plan to diversify its economy away from oil and gas exports and to invest in aerospace. 200 of the jets are destined for the russian air force.
gleeful production of the jets will not start until -- the full production of the jets will not start until 2015. >> this is gmt from "bbc world news." i am gavin hewitt. here are the headlines. attacks in israel. several appear dead in at least two shooting incidents in the south. the syrian president tells the when he has halted all military operations against protesters -- tells the u.n. he has halted all military operations against the protesters. aaron is here and the markets have turned sour. >> it has become a familiar picture. another very rocky, crazy day. dax was down close to 4%. ftse, 3.5% down.
why the slump today? fears that china's central bank is said to -- is set to raise interest rates. japanese exports last month fell more than expected. today, u.k. retail sales came out weaker than expected. there was a bleak sales outlook yesterday from the computer giant, dell. add that to weak growth numbers from the likes of france and germany. that does not make for a very good picture. i was looking at the banking stocks. commerzbank in germany is down 4%. deutsche bank is down almost 4%. this is what one deutsche boerse trader had to say about today's moves. >> it's all about psychology.
i guess we are approaching a situation just after the lehman collapse -- the high level of uncertainty is about to attack the real economy. that's a bad sign. that's why politics should do their homework. >> the head of global research at hsbc has also seen parallels with the banking crisis of 2008, but she says we should be careful not to overplay the similarities. >> what we saw overnight is an increase in demand for u.s. dollar funding. in other words, they could not get a bank, or the bank could not get market in the interbank market, so they went to the ecb and the fed. it is tiny. we're talking about $500 billion. given the nervousness last week, it has brought it all back. >> after the so-called safe haven gold, because experts in
that industry believe that the price has not peaked, according to the latest report from the industry body, the world gold council. it says there are three factors. one, china and india are buying it. investors are buying it as a safe haven asset as they become concerned about the health of the economy. finally, central banks are making big purchases to build up their reserves. >> if you look, overall, at the first half of this year and 2010, and the outlook for the third quarter, demand is extremely strong across the board. in this quarter, there was a big increase in jewelry demand. india and china were up 38% and 25% respectively. bar demand was also up. coin investment, also. in western markets, western
investors, predominately through gold etf's have been loading up on gold as a result of the downgrading of the u.s. debt recently. you have seen really strong numbers across the board. technology, too. you now have new technologies using gold. for the first time, it's appearing in the car industry. there's strong demand across bpf several energy companies investigating a sheen spotted in the gulf of mexico. the british energy firm has told us that it was not anywhere near the size of the 2010 deepwater horizon platform disaster. bp says it is still analyzing material gathered from close to
one of the well heads, it does not believe it to contain hydrocarbons. >> thank you very much. some good news for a change. u.s. vice president joe biden has begun an official visit to china amid criticism about his country's financial problems. china's state-run media has hit out on america because of its mounting debt. biden will hold a series of meetings with senior chinese officials, including the vice- president, xi jinping, who is expected to be the country's next leader. >> china and the united states are competitive as much as partners. vice president joe biden was tasting that at the start of his visit in china. the americans won in this match, but there's a feeling, i economic terms at least, that
china's a star is rising bbc.c. its state-controlled media made much of america's debt problems ahead of the visit. xi jinping is worried about the global economy and he told mr biden -- mr. biden when they met. >> as the two largest economies in the world, at the moment when the world economic circumstance is uneasy, i think we hold the key, together, to not only our own prosperity, but to generating growth and jobs across the world. >> u.s. vice president joe biden seemed more interested in talking about the relationship between america and china. he says there's none more important.
the chinese obviously see the economy as pivotal to those ties. >> this is it is not about making deals. it's about building a better understanding between two countries that do not always see eye to eye. that is important work, because the relationship between china and the united states will help shape the world over the coming decades. bbc news, beijing. >> libyan rebels say they have taken control of the port south of the capital of tripoli as part of their efforts to around tripoli and cut off its supplies. they continue their assault at an oil refinery in the port city up zawiya. >> the loss of the oil refinery just outside of the city to the west of here would represent a
major victory for rebel forces. they have been trying to take control for several days now. in has been reported that a pro- gaddafi forces are nowhere to be seen at the refinery and that the opposition has complete control. in terms of the strategic values, it is the major oil refinery in the west and it does help supply power and fuel to the capital city of tripoli. in that sense, this is a big blow to supporters of colonel gaddafi. in terms of the impact on the libyan army, perhaps slightly less so. it is known that the army has been smuggling fuel across the border from tunisia and algeria into libya. perhaps less of an immediate impact on those forces, but it will deal a psychological blow to supporters of colonel gaddafi here in tripoli. we're also getting reports that the rebels are consolidating
their hold on the city of zawiya. the government has been saying that its forces will be able to seize control back from the rebels and force them out. it does not appear as if that is happening. so far, there's no real sign of panic in the capital city of tripoli. last night i saw all pro- gaddafi citizens on the streets again being very vocal in their support for their leader. at the same time, for the first time, we are beginning to detect signs of nervousness among some government employees here. >> a reminder of our top story on gmt. reports from israel say several have been killed and dozens injured in attacks near the egyptian border. the latest reports suggest as many as six people were killed when gunmen targeted a bus traveling parallel to the border. that's all for the moment. stay with us here on "bbc world